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Greetings Everyone,
In October we adopted a 1 year old, larger terrier mix. He was taken in by the shelter as a stray. During his initial time with us he was terrified of anything human or domestic. He had issues going through doors, couldn't walk on a leash, etc.

He is a totally different dog now in terms of confidence. He's still a bit jumpy at certain things but a complete 180 from before. We are having repetitive issues however and because they are so sporadic, I'm looking for advice on how to fix. Disclosure, we have not used a crate during our training efforts.

Here are the issues, broken out.

1. Peeing. We went two weeks almost after adopting him with no accidents. We were, and are, very vigilant about taking him out regularly. During the first several weeks we acted as if he were a puppy, using treats and tons of praise for going outside. Every time we think we get somewhere, he takes a step in the wrong direction. We go weeks without accidents and then he regresses and will do his business outside and then an hour later he may flood our kitchen floor. I started watching his water intake to see if he was just "recharging" a bit too much but he really isn't drinking a lot. There are zero warning signs when he does have accidents, he just lets the flood gates open. The reason this is so frustrating is because it's not consistent. We are very consistent with taking our dogs out as they go at the same hours each day. It would make sense to me if he were regularly having accidents without stretches of time in between where he has none. He is also a submissive pee-er. Pretty much every time we come home he will dribble when you bend down to pet him (even if I ignore him for a min or two until he calms down). I am hoping this is something he may grow out of. I should also note that he has never had an accident at night. He goes out for his last walk between 10-10:30pm and goes out again at 5:45am (so why are we having accidents when it's only been a couple of hours?!)

2. Chewing. He has not touched any of our furniture, thankfully. We never leave our dogs home alone for more than 5 hours max. My boyfriend works from home so they are with someone all day during the week. One night while we were out we came home to our front door trim and base boards chewed to pieces. I covered with bitter spray which didn't help so I've resorted to hot sauce which has worked. After his chew session, he had no issue for several more weeks. The other night we came home to another spot chewed on the wall. He will also chew holes in any blankets or towels that are in his bed or on the floor. We have multiple chew toys of various varieties out for the dogs so he does not lack things to chew. The chewing only happens when we are gone, except once. My boyfriend was on a conference call with the door shut to his office and when he came out, Murphy had chewed on the wall. We have had a rug down in our kitchen for a month with no issues. Today, he destroyed it while my boyfriend ran out to grab lunch. The chewing, like his peeing, is very sporadic. There is no indication, to me, of what is causing him to do it. It's not like I can say that he only chews things if we leave him alone too long as he's done it when we've been gone for an hour.

3.Fear. He seems to sometimes fear things and sometimes not. For example, we use the fan over our stove pretty much daily and he's fine. One evening though, when the fan was on he was hiding in our room. Then he came out and ran with his tail between his legs, peeing as he went and was very scared. He was fine when the fan was turned off. Two days later and to this day, the fan does not phase him.

Because there is no consistency in his behavior patterns, it's very hard to determine why he's doing these things and the best way to work on correcting them. Any advice is greatly appreciated, especially if you have dealt with similar issues.
 

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The peeing can be a sign of a UTI and that type of chewing sounds like separation anxiety.
 

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I had the same thoughts as TruckersMom.

The inconsistency of the peeing problem does sound like a UTI. It's probably not happening at night because he's asleep so the "urge" to pee isn't bothering him then.

The chewing definitely sounds like separation anxiety. There are some stickies on separation anxiety -- typically a crate or xpen is the best way forward for dealing with it.
 

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Although only a vet can truly rule out a UTI (and he's got an upcoming appt for a general 6 month check up anyway) I had ruled it out based on the fact that he shows no other signs of an infection. No painful peeing, certainly no issue with the amount he is able to urinate, has not been licking at himself at all, no increased water intake or decreased appetite and zero odor to his urine.

This lack of warning signs led me to believe it is behavioral. We have been back and forth between accidents and no accidents since we brought him home back in October. He did really well for a while but it seemed that after his first regression, he is having more frequent periods of regression.

He gives zero signs when he has to go out. No sniffing, pacing, whining, etc. One of his favorite places to lay (why, I don't know) is up against our front door. Because he is so frequently found there, I don't take him sitting or laying by the door as a sign he needs to go out. Other times, he will just be walking around as normal and either just starting peeing a river on the floor or worse, his bed.
 

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@sarahann88 You are right that only a vet can rule in or out a UTI.

A dog on average will need to pee once every four to six hours, although some will go eight and even 12 hours without needing to pee. An average healthy dog will produce approximately 10 to 20 milliliters of urine for each pound of body weight per day.

An average dog will drink about 20-40 milliliters of water per pound of body weight per day. Anything more is considered Polysipsia (excessive water intake).

Large/Small volume of urine and breaking house-training are signs of a UTI, just like humans a dog does not have to exhibit all the symptoms to have a UTI. To start figuring it out you should observe the color of the urine (dark could indicate a UTI, light could indicate kidney problems).

Also note that:
Frequent urination without increased water intake is a a more serious matter which may be caused by any number of multiple issues.
https://www.care.com/a/frequent-urination-in-dogs-how-often-should-your-dog-pee-20150825044410
Urinating Frequently (Polyuria) Can Be a Sign of Serious Disease in Pets
Polydipsia and Polyuria in Dogs
Medical Reasons for Dog Urinating in the House | Stop Dog Marking - Pet360 Pet Parenting Simplified
 

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When I first adopted my dog many years ago she would randomly pee as well. It would even happen in her sleep she would just pee all over herself. If your dog has a clean bill of health from the vet my suggestion is taking him on long walks. This seemed to help my dog at the time a lot. She got her exercise so she wasn't going crazy but it also helped her work out all her bathroom breaks so when we came inside she was completely empty.

As for the chewing it does sound like separation anxiety. The only suggestion I have is getting that dog a crate and making it his "happy place" My current dog has some anxiety when I leave as well but I have made his crate a positive comfortable place so he willingly goes there and just falls asleep while I am gone. I achieved this by when I was home I would get him a peanut butter kong filled with smelly treats and put it in his crate. I always had a fluffy blanket and extra toys as well in there. I always left the door open so it was HIS CHOICE to come and go. Eventually he learned that going to his crate = treats and an ear scratch. Now I can find him sleeping in there even when we are home. My dog always gets crated when we leave because I know he would destroy something he also howls when I leave but if I have him in his crate hes quiet and just goes to sleep.

I would suggest trying those things but don't force it go at the dogs pace.
 

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Not really helpful, just a thought. But if he is giving no signs of having to go out could it just be that he doesn't know he is suppose to go outside and not pee inside. I would treat him like a puppy, but it could take longer. Some dogs pick it up really fast, but others just when you think they have it down have an accident. Also the submissive peeing, I'd try to ignore him for a while, more than a few minutes. Also as his confidents increase the peeing may decrease.
 

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Not really helpful, just a thought. But if he is giving no signs of having to go out could it just be that he doesn't know he is suppose to go outside and not pee inside.
I really think he knows, especially since we went a month with no accidents after we went through potty training 101 with him. Also, when he does it, he immediately runs and hides or gives other signs that make it seem that he knows that he wasn't supposed to.

I've read through all of the responses posted and the links that have been given, etc. and I believe I will feel more at ease or have a more distinct answer after we see our vet. If it's medical, hopefully it's something we can easily treat and if not, then we just have to go back to square one with potty training.
 

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When I first adopted my dog many years ago she would randomly pee as well. It would even happen in her sleep she would just pee all over herself. If your dog has a clean bill of health from the vet my suggestion is taking him on long walks. This seemed to help my dog at the time a lot. She got her exercise so she wasn't going crazy but it also helped her work out all her bathroom breaks so when we came inside she was completely empty.

As for the chewing it does sound like separation anxiety. The only suggestion I have is getting that dog a crate and making it his "happy place" My current dog has some anxiety when I leave as well but I have made his crate a positive comfortable place so he willingly goes there and just falls asleep while I am gone. I achieved this by when I was home I would get him a peanut butter kong filled with smelly treats and put it in his crate. I always had a fluffy blanket and extra toys as well in there. I always left the door open so it was HIS CHOICE to come and go. Eventually he learned that going to his crate = treats and an ear scratch. Now I can find him sleeping in there even when we are home. My dog always gets crated when we leave because I know he would destroy something he also howls when I leave but if I have him in his crate hes quiet and just goes to sleep.

I would suggest trying those things but don't force it go at the dogs pace.
You know, it's weird, because we have two routes for walks. Both of them are decently long but he only ever pees once outside. Even when we go on longer hikes I've never seen him pee more than once on any walk/hike. He is neutered and still squats to pee. Unlike my other dog, he doesn't mark. He squats as soon as he gets to the grass and pees a ton (I've literally counted 20 second pees before and it's a steady stream, not just a dribble). It's like he totally empties himself out once and he's done. This is why its so odd to me because he pees the same massive amount if he has gone out 2 hours ago or 4 hours ago.
 

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I really think he knows, especially since we went a month with no accidents after we went through potty training 101 with him. Also, when he does it, he immediately runs and hides or gives other signs that make it seem that he knows that he wasn't supposed to.
Have you reprimanded/yelled/corrected him for going inside? If not you it's possible someone else before you go him did. Dogs don't really make the connection of 'inside pee bad' when you correct them. They see the act of peeing in front of you as bad. I still don't think he gets it completely. Or if he knows he should be going outside he may not know how to tell you he needs to go. You have a fearful dog, this may take longer than it would otherwise. You need to have patients and be consistent.
 
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